Skip to main contentCambridge University Reporter

No 6176

Wednesday 27 January 2010

Vol cxl No 17

pp. 497–524



2 February, Tuesday. Discussion at 2 p.m. in the Senate-House (see below).

7 February, Sunday. Preacher before the University at 11.15 a.m., The Most Reverend Metropolitan Kallistos of Diokleia.

13 February, Saturday. Lent Term divides.

Discussions at 2 p.m.


2 February, Tuesday

20 February, Saturday at 2 p.m.

16 February, Tuesday

27 March, Saturday at 11 a.m.

2 March, Tuesday

16 March, Tuesday

Notice of a Discussion on Tuesday, 2 February 2010

The Vice-Chancellor invites those qualified under the regulations for Discussions (Statutes and Ordinances, p. 107) to attend a Discussion in the Senate-House, on Tuesday, 2 February 2010, at 2 p.m., for the discussion of:

1. Report of the General Board, dated 6 January 2010, on the establishment of a Professorship of Ophthalmology (Reporter, p. 477).

2. Report of the General Board, dated 6 January 2010, on the re-establishment of the Professorship of Mathematical Sciences (Reporter, p. 477).

3. Report of the General Board, dated 6 January 2010, on the title of the Regius Professorship of Modern History (Reporter, p. 478).

4. Report of the Faculty Board of Computer Science and Technology, dated 1 December 2009, on the introduction of a Part III in the Computer Science Tripos as a new route to the M.Eng. Degree (Reporter, p. 479).

5. Report of the General Board, dated 23 December 2009, on the establishment of a Sainsbury Laboratory and three Professorships within the Laboratory (Reporter, p. 490).

Notice of benefaction

25 January 2010

The Vice-Chancellor gives notice that she has received with gratitude a benefaction of £167,000 from Mme Bouhon-Bustin in memory of her daughter, Isabelle Bouhon, to promote the education and recognition of early stage researchers in the field of Regenerative Medicine. Provision is made so that if Regenerative Medicine is no longer an academic discipline, the benefaction may be used for early stage researchers in the fields of cellular and developmental biology.

The Council is submitting a Grace to the Regent House (Grace 1, p. 509) for the approval of regulations to govern the proposed Isabelle Bouhon Fund.

Independent (Browne) review of higher education funding and student finance: Notice

25 January 2010

The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills has appointed Lord Browne of Madingley to chair an independent review of higher education funding and student finance. The terms of reference of the Review ( are:

The Review will analyse the challenges and opportunities facing higher education and their implications for student financing and support. It will examine the balance of contributions to higher education funding by taxpayers, students, graduates and employers. Its primary task is to make recommendations to Government on the future of fees policy and financial support for full and part-time undergraduate and postgraduate students.

The Council has agreed a principally factual response to the first call for evidence requested by the Review which is due by the end of January.

The Council will also respond to the second call for evidence (in March) on behalf of the University about future funding for higher education. Working parties to consider the issues for Cambridge have been established as follows:

(i)a working party on fees and loans will be chaired by the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Planning and Resources (as Chairman of the Planning and Resources Committee), and will include the Registrary, the Pro-Vice- Chancellor for Education, the Secretary of the Colleges’ Committee, the Academic Secretary, Professor Simon Franklin (as Head of a School), and Mr Tom Chigbo (as President of the Cambridge University Students Union (CUSU));

(ii)a working party on bursaries will be chaired by the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Education, and will include Dr Nick Bampos (as a Senior Tutor), the Director of Undergraduate Recruitment, Dr Jon Parry (in respect of the Isaac Newton Trust), and Mr Tom Chigbo (as President of CUSU).

The Council would be grateful for any comments from members and staff of the University or other interested persons for consideration by the working parties which should be sent to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Planning and Resources at the Old Schools, Trinity Lane (email by 15 February 2010.

Discussion of a topic of concern on 10 November 2009: Notice

25 January 2010

The Council has considered the remarks made on 10 November at the Discussion of the following topic of concern: the installation of a lift in the University Combination Room without the approval of the Regent House by Grace (Reporter, p. 244). The Council regrets that this work has caused concern to members of the Regent House. The process with regard to the installation of the lift has followed that of other works which have been required by the University in using its best endeavours to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act 2005 (DDA). For such works the Council takes the advice of its committees (including the Joint Committee on Disability and the Resource Management Committee) on how to comply with requirements of the DDA. None of these works has been the subject of a Grace to the Regent House as in general the Resource Management Committee has considered that any project costing less than £1m is a minor work. With reference to the Combination Room in particular the relevant bodies and the architects appointed have attempted to be sensitive to the historical importance of the Room in their proposals.

The necessary alterations to the Old Schools to improve disabled access were identified by the Joint Committee on Disability, as part of a ten-year plan for implementing improvements across the University’s Estate. A feasibility study was carried out by Freeland Rees Roberts, local architects who specialize in work on listed buildings. The Freeland Rees Roberts study concluded that the Old Schools, which incorporates floors at many different levels, required three lifts strategically located around the building to provide full disabled access. One of the lifts needed to be located in the vicinity of the Combination Room to provide access to the Syndicate Room, the East Room, the Combination Room, and the Vice Chancellor’s office. The study found that it was not possible to convert the existing 1930s lift in the reception area of the Old Schools for disabled access without significant damage to the Scott staircase, which is perhaps the most heavily used staircase in the Old Schools. Even if conversion had been possible the lift would not have provided disabled access to the Combination Room, an important consideration for compliance with the Joint Committee’s requirements. The Resource Management Committee approved a proposal to proceed with the installation of one lift to provide disabled access to the Combination Room, and when the minutes of this Committee were circulated to the Council they included a reference to the refurbishment of the Combination Room, including the provision of lift access.

The study examined six possible locations for the new lift and, after extensive consultation with English Heritage and the Cambridge City Council Conservation Officer, concluded that the most suitable and least intrusive location was for the lift to rise at the north-east end of the dais in the Combination Room. This proposal complied with the aspiration that installation of the lift should not disturb the medieval walls (the floor which the lift will need to penetrate is a twentieth-century (1930s) concrete construction). The proposed installation also follows accepted conservation principles, that is any works should be reversible without damage to the historic fabric. Location of the lift, external to the Combination Room, for example in the East Room, would result in breaking through the fourteenth-century wall and the original Georgian floor, rather than the 1930s concrete floor, as proposed. Such work would be irreversible and was therefore not acceptable to English Heritage or the Conservation Officer. Contrary to what was stated at the Discussion, the proposed installation thereby avoids the need to gouge holes in the medieval or Georgian structure.

Both the Conservation Officer and English Heritage considered the proposals and agreed that the design which had been developed was the most appropriate. They therefore granted the necessary consents for it to be installed. The reference to a ‘giant tardis’ must therefore be judged against the skill and experience which the architects have exercised in designing the lift and which they have previously demonstrated on other University and College building projects, many of which have won design awards.

Prior to starting work, it was confirmed that, although the staircase leading to the Combination Room is demised to Gonville and Caius College, the University has rights of access to the Combination Room via this staircase (see the Heads of agreement between the University and the College which are attached to the Report of the Council of the Senate on the proposed leasehold sale of the Cockerell building, Reporter, 1989–90, p. 499). It is a matter of concern to some officers of Gonville and Caius College that they were not fully apprised of the nature and timetable of the works.

Since the Discussion a representation has been made by a member of the Senate to the Vice-Chancellor under Statute K, 5 about the fact that no Grace was put forward for this project. This representation was considered by the Warden of Robinson College who advised the Vice-Chancellor that the representation was out of time but that, on a very fine balance, the works in dispute did not amount to a ‘substantial’ alteration within the meaning of Statute F, I, 2. He has however recommended that in future the Council and its sub-committees take a broader view of what amounts to a ‘substantial alteration’ and that an appropriate set of factors are weighed in the balance alongside simple budgetary and size guidelines. He further recommended that University committees reaching decisions on building works consider expressly in each case whether a Grace is required for those works under Statute F, I, 2 and that committee minutes record the outcome of such a consideration. The Council has accepted these recommendations.

The Council has received a request from 79 members of the Regent House for the submission of the following Grace in accordance with Statute A, VIII, 7:

That all construction works for a lift into the Regent House Combination Room be removed and the building returned to its former state, and that the Council report, as soon as convenient, to the Regent House with proposals to secure reasonable access to the Combination Room and associated rooms for those unable to use the stairs.

Under the provisions of Statute A, VIII, 9(b) the Council has referred the Grace to the Finance Committee for their advice, as the Grace will involve additional expenditure from University funds. The Council hopes to receive advice from the Committee in time to consider the proposed Grace further at its meeting on 15 February. The Council will inform the Regent House of the outcome of its considerations as soon as possible after that meeting.

At its meeting on 18 January the Council agreed by a majority that, in the meantime, the work on the lift should continue.

Other remarks made at the Discussion referred to the use of the Combination Room; the William Morris ‘Clouds’ carpet; and the Committee of Management of the Room.

Under the regulations for the Committee of Management of the Combination Room elections should be held biennially at the same time as the elections to the Council. No nominations were made for the elections held in 1999 and 2001 and since 2001 the Committee has been in abeyance. The day-to-day management has been overseen by the Facilities Management Section of the Estate Management and Building Service.

Use of the Combination Room has declined steadily in recent years and the catering for the Room has been in substantial deficit. To encourage use of the Room it has for some time been open to all members and staff of the University. The recent notice highlighting the use of the Room was authorized by the Registrary when the proposed construction of the lift necessitated the closure of the ground floor Old Schools staff tea room. The reduction in opening hours reflects the pattern of use of the Room and is also required to reduce staff costs. The information on the University’s website has now been updated. The Council recognizes that the situation needs to be regularized both as regards the Committee of Management and as regards possible changes to the use of the room. The Combination Room was established by Grace in 1950; any permanent changes in its use will be referred to the Regent House in the normal way.

The Council agreed in March 2000 that, in order to preserve the William Morris carpet from further damage, advice should be sought from the Director of the Fitzwilliam Museum, initially to see if any suitable alternative location could be found for it in the University. Unfortunately this has not proved possible, and the carpet is now being stored, after extensive conservation work to stabilize its condition, on behalf of the University by the Fitzwilliam Museum.

Election of student members of the Council and of the General Board: Notice

21 January 2010

Student members of the Council

Notice is given that an election of three students to serve as members of the University Council in accordance with Statute A, IV, 2(d) will be held on Thursday, 11 March 2010. Members are to be elected in the following two categories (Statutes and Ordinances, p. 114):

(i)two students elected by and from among all eligible students in the University;

(ii)one graduate student elected by and from among all eligible graduate students in the University.

No person shall be nominated in both categories. Members elected are to serve for one year from 1 July 2010.

Student members of the General Board

Notice is given that an election of two students to serve as members of the General Board in accordance with Statute C, I, 4(d) will be held on the same day, Thursday, 11 March 2010. Members are to be elected in the following two categories (Statutes and Ordinances, p. 117):

(i)one undergraduate student elected by and from among all eligible undergraduate students in the University;

(ii)one graduate student elected by and from among all eligible graduate students in the University.

Members elected are to serve for one year from 1 July 2010.

The elections

The Registrary will publish before 11 February 2010 electoral rolls of all persons who are eligible, under the provision of Statutes A, IV, 2 and C, I, 4 and of the regulations governing the conduct of these elections and rules made under the regulations, to vote and to stand as candidates. Copies of the full electoral rolls will be available for inspection in the University Offices (Secretariat) and appropriate sections of the rolls will be available in the Colleges. The elections are conducted under the Single Transferable Vote regulations.

In order to be eligible a candidate must be nominated on a nomination form sent to the Deputy Returning Officer in the University Offices (Secretariat), The Old Schools, so as to arrive not later than noon on Thursday, 4 March 2010. Nomination forms may be obtained from the University Offices (Secretariat), and also from CUSU and the Graduate Union. The forms contain (a) a statement, which must be signed by eight students eligible to take part in the election in the relevant category, certifying that they nominate the candidate for election, and (b) a statement which must be signed by the candidate, consenting to be nominated and agreeing to serve if elected. Nomination forms should be accompanied by a statement by the candidate for the information of voters. Nominations will be published. Not later than the day following the last date for the receipt of nominations a complete list of nominations will be sent to Colleges and subsequently will be published in the Reporter.

Voting will take place on Thursday, 11 March 2010, in person, in Colleges. The hours of voting in each College will be determined by local College Returning Officers (normally an officer of a JCR, MCR, or equivalent body, or their deputy), but the polls must be open for at least four hours within the period 8.30 a.m. to 7 p.m., including the hours 12.30 p.m. to 1.30 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.

The Administrative Secretary is the Deputy Returning Officer.

University Computing Service: Notice by the Director

Teaching and other software on the Public Workstation Facility: call for requests for the academical year 2010–11

This notice is addressed to all those who use or are planning to use the Public Workstation Facility (PWF), including PWF machines in Departments and Colleges, to support their teaching, whether for organized courses or for other College or departmental teaching. It is also addressed to those desiring to use PWF applications generally. It covers applications for all three PWF platforms (PWF Linux, Macintoshes, and Windows).

Requests for new applications or for new versions for the next academical year must reach the PWF Manager at the University Computing Service (UCS) by Friday, 12 March 2010. To submit a request, please fill in the form at, and include information on licensing and the date the application is required. Please also fill in the form for applications no longer required for teaching, so that they can be removed.

It is regretted that late requests are unlikely to be met. The list of software that the Computing Service expects to be available for the start of the Michaelmas Term will be announced at by the division of the Easter Term.

The programme of installation of new software will start immediately after the end of Full Easter Term. Those teaching during the Long Vacation should note that the installation of new versions of PWF software during that period may have implications for them as the version available may change.

The full set of applications for 2010–11 is intended to be available from Monday, 6 September, so that those whose teaching depends on these applications can check that they work correctly and update course notes. This also allows for any necessary remedial action to be taken by UCS staff before the start of the Michaelmas Term.

For some applications the licence cost has to be borne by the institution requiring the software. The UCS can advise on costs; please enquire by email to pwf‑ Note also that a request for a new version from one institution may have cost implications for other institutions that also use the software. Consequently, those requesting software are asked to consider the financial implications of their requests for their institutions and for other institutions covered by the PWF Managed Cluster Service.